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Wednesday, August 21, 2013


"I’ve been knocking on doors almost every day since December the 21st. I’ve had no more than 45 people tell me they support the stadium. I’ve had thousands of people tell me that they do not support the stadium and that they’re incredibly upset with it. Sometimes you have to work for the people. They pay the bills.”
~Donald F. Munson~
 October 3, 2012

“I took a stand in opposition to the stadium during the campaign; a stadium downtown. I favor revitalization, rebuilding the stadium where it’s (currently) located ... or some place elsewhere if it’s possible.”
“I do not support it downtown. I’m doing my job of representing the people ... and I’m going to stay firm on it. I haven’t lied to my constituency in the past and I’m not going to start now.”

~Donald F. Munson~
The Herald Mail, November 7, 2012
     I clearly remember hearing Don Munson say that he knocked on about 10,000 Hagerstown doors and that only 45 people wanted the stadium downtown. This is why I can not believe that this is the council member who has decided that the voter does not matter and who will single handedly with his vote allow the stadium to be built downtown...that is if the Suns decide to bless us with their presence. (Thought I was gone, didn't you. I still own a home in Hagerstown!) Yes, I feel like I've been sucker punched. 
    I say that I am surprised, but I'm not really. This is the same politician that lost his seat as state senator because he never saw a project that the taxpayer couldn't afford. He never saw a bloated budget that he couldn't vote for. He never saw a Liberal Democrat that he couldn't support. He was finally identified as a Republican In Name Only and ran out of Annapolis by the voters of Washington County. Following that election he was BFFs with Delegate Donoghue, who is a Democrat and the most liberal member of the Western Maryland delegation, and who's district is the city of Hagerstown (Could this have been their plan all along?). Why did the Hagerstown voters believe him? Not only will it be his vote that allows the stadium to be built downtown against the will of the voters, but he will also allow it to be financed almost entirely by the taxpayer. That is Donald Munson! Of course he will!!
   I have always said that I really do not care where the stadium is located. I only care about the financing, but I am furious that those voters who did not want it downtown have been betrayed in this manner. So before I move on to the finances...although my friend Council Member Metzner had been for the downtown stadium during his election campaign, after the election he said, "The voters have spoken and clearly they do not want a stadium downtown." I have to be a bit disappointed that Metzner is also acting without regard for
 the voters.
    I am stunned that not only are they going to ignore the voters regarding the location of the new Suns stadium, they are also going to ignore the risk and unfair burden to the taxpayer. The Herald Mail stated that the mayor and council will proceed with the same funding formula which is almost entirely public funding. Have they not heard that Fredericksburg had the good sense to reject that funding strategy? Have they not heard that when Fredericksburg rejected that funding strategy that the Suns found a private investor to pay for the project? Have they not heard that Fredericksburg would only have to pay for a parking garage? I am sure that they have, so why would they continue down the path of public funding? I will tell you why. It is because investors know that it is too risky to build it in Hagerstown. Investors think that they will lose money. This city council is giving in to the noise of a small group of baseball fans, the Suns who have everything to gain and nothing to lose, and those who consider themselves the movers and shakers (but not investors) in Hagerstown politics. They want what they want.

    The Herald Mail says this about the funding formula:
"Financing remains a major concern for city officials, who still plan on a funding formula that calls for one-third each coming from local sources, meaning the city and county, as well as the state and the private sector."
This statement couldn't be more vague with the private sector thrown in at the end for those of us who care about the taxpayer. What does this actually mean? It seems to imply that the city and county taxpayers will pay one third, the state taxpayers will pay one third, and the private sector will pay one third. Even at face value that doesn't seem fair. So that means that Hagerstown residents will be paying through their taxes to the city, through their taxes paid to the county, and through their taxes paid to the state?  Who is this private sector that they speak of because as far as I know they have no investors?
    In regard to the county's contribution, the HM reports:
"[Munson] said he would also work to get a recommitment from the Washington County Board of Commissioners, which previously pledged indirect support of about $400,000-a-year over two decades to the project."
This recommitment was not a commitment at all. I was approached at the State of the County presentation by Commissioner Ruth Anne Callaham and she wanted to talk about this so-called commitment. She wanted me to know that the $400,000 a year for 20 years that was being reported as being "indirectly pledged" by the county was not a pledge of actual money. She said that they voted on "the concept" of pledging money in support of the project. She claimed that at the time she thought that she was voting for actual money that would be in the next budget. She said that she later realized that the money would not be in the budget, but that they were voting on a budget that would come after the next election when the next board of commissioners would begin their terms! The next board may not agree with this board's "concept" and choose not to fund it. Weird, huh? I was floored. So, at that very meeting I publicly asked Greg Murray if this was true, without naming names or stating why I was asking, and he said that the money would be in the 2014 budget. Somebody is either misinformed or not telling the truth.
    Now Munson has pledged to do what Munson does:
“I’m going to work and spend a great deal of time in Annapolis during the upcoming General Assembly session to get the state’s share of about $10 million."
Changing his profile picture from that gnarly-looking man with a scowl to the giddy-looking man with a maniacal grin changed nothing about the way that he governs.  He is going to get every cent of the taxpayer's money, regardless of the burden that the taxpayer is already carrying, and he will expect you to thank him for it! That is what he thinks politicians are elected to do...spend money! In fact I would bet that his measure of a good politician is the one who spends the most money on projects. It does not matter to him if we can't afford it. It certainly does not matter to him that the voters do not want it.
 "...sometimes you have to work for the people. They pay the bills.”
Donald F. Munson 
FYI, SUCKER PUNCH, as defined by the Urban Dictionary: 
1. Easily confused with a punch defined as a "bitch move" a true sucker punch is quite a bit more complex than a simple unannounced attack.  It primarily involves a closed fist contacting the soft underbelly of a person (beneath the rib cage) at a high velocity, causing the ensuing force to press upward on the victim's diaphragm, leading to a sudden expulsion of air from the victim's mouth and lungs. This opening blow leaves the victim open to various other attacks, often leading to what would be called "bitch moves" because of the defenseless nature of the victim.
2. This occurs when someone hits someone else from behind, usually when the person being hit doesn't know it until afterwards. Usually considered shady or a "bitch move".


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